I just got back from Florida... greeted by a cold, humid and rainy week in New Jersey. While I was in Florida, though, I did a sketch. After a soothing swim in 82 degree water in the Ocean, and a gorgeous 88 degree day, I sat at an outdoor hotel dining area and drew the sea, the palm trees, and the view. I ordered a cobb salad, with chopped turkey, iceberg lettuce, avocado, sliced hard boiled egg, and chips of crispy bacon... A blue cheese dressing, and crumbs of blue cheese.
I sat there, with a pot of the most delicious coffee, and kept refilling my cup. What an amazing day, and just me. Perfect weather, and a quiet wind moving the branches of the palm trees before me.
My trip in Florida was to be a service to my grandparents, staying with my 95 year old grandfather as my grandmother went on a trip of her own. During the day a nurse came, allowing me the opportunity to get out of the apartment for a few hours. My grandma has taught me that we need to enjoy ourselves so that we can meet the challenges in our lives with a clear and positive attitude.
And so, I drove my grandma's Lincoln town car, cream leather interior and pale sea foam green body, listening to Frank Sinatra singing Dindi, the Girl from Ipanema, and other soft brazilian music from the songbooks of Antonio Carlos Jobim. Needless to say, I drove slow, and in wonderment that this type of experience is real. I pinch myself of course when I go to park that boat...
I return to the apartment, and imagine being 95, reduced to sleeping most of the day, and unable to walk more than a couple laps around the living room. However, my grandfather is all there. 95, and he can still remember the name of the theatre where he first took my grandmother to see a play, when they used to go out on the town. We drink scotch, and sit and talk about our family, my future plans, and my grandma. They have been married for 63 years, and when my grandmother returned from her trip, my grandfather smiled widely, hugged her, and told her how much he missed her.